Archive for August 19th, 2007

Paying homage to “Chocolate Rain”

I know it’s old now, but man that “Chocolate Rain” is the best thing since “Dramatic Chipmunk” (he’s really a prairie dog.)

Some guy named Vanilla Snow’s take:

John Mayer got into the mix on my favorite Best Week Ever on VH1. But it sounds like Nelly Furtado of course.

Is marriage a rite of passage?

With all this recent talk in my blog about marriage, I just have to wonder something about the rites of passage we encounter.

There are all these small and momentous moments in our lives. The small ones are simple enough: Tying your shoes for the first time, making your own lunch for school, walking to the bus stop by yourself. But the large ones like your first kiss, losing your virginity, high school graduation, first job (maybe not in that order of course!) can place their mark on you for the rest of your life.

Your rite of passage into adulthood is clearly defined by these things. There are so many more too like finally achieving independence, going to college, children — whatever is a milestone in your life isn’t necessarily the same for everyone. But is marriage one of the required rites?

Many say that marriage comes before children so it is a necessary thing. But you don’t have to be married to have children while many say the two should go hand and hand. I’ve never really had a desire to have children and at one point of my life marriage wasn’t something I wanted either. But as things truck along and years pass, marriage has been on my “to do” list of things. I know it kind of sounds clinical and impersonal that way — thinking of it as a check off on a master list, but I guess that is how I see it. There-in lies the problem?

I finished college, landed my first real career. What’s next? Of course always improving or looking to move up or progressing in what I am accomplishing should be enough on my plate. Sometimes it isn’t — much to my chagrin. Marriage isn’t anywhere near my radar. Is marriage something EVERYONE should reach for at some point in their lives? Just as with all those other milestones, is marriage a rite of passage or just another option?

There is a list of famous, great people who never married. I can think of a few spectacular writers and activists alone — Jane Austen (who has been referred to as a spinster) and Susan B. Anthony (where in one text says, “… she had time, freedom and ability to travel.” Not so bad.) But did they really miss out? What if you never reach for the supposed finality of tying the knot? Are you a lesser person for it? To say less is a bit dramatic of course but what about all those references to spinsters not too long ago (and sometimes used today). Why is an unmarried man a bachelor and an unmarried woman an ugly-sounding name like “spinster…”? Sounds like sinister. 🙂

Actually spinster used to be used on applications and documents in place of the word  “single.” Centuries ago women who remained unmarried were looked down upon. Some even considered witches!! And just in the past few decades such as in the 1950s, this idea never really went away. It was just a tad less menacing! I am not blind enough to believe this sort of thinking and overall perception doesn’t exist today.

I remember in middle school that the fact that I never dated ( I wasn’t even allowed to until I was 16) prompted someone to say I was a lesbian. And it was said as an insult, of course. I could have cared less about the accusation but what enraged me was society’s idea that everyone, even at that tender age, should always be partnered and if you weren’t, something was wrong with you. And today that translates to people starting to suggest seeking out a spouse on eHarmony or Match.com.

Of course I realize that the whole world isn’t always persecuting the perpetual single person. But there is no denying the underlying raised eyebrow if you have reached a certain age and never wed.